JUST a couple of weeks ago Germany's Miroslav Klose was persona non grata among German fans after his trickle of league goals but the striker has silenced his critics with a sparkling comeback.
On Sunday the 32-year-old, who came into the World Cup after what appeared to be his worst season in years with just three league goals for Bayern Munich, could finally crack a smile.
Pushing teammate and double goalscorer Thomas Mueller aside and telling him "you've said enough", Klose, who had also just scored in their 4-1 demolition of England to steer Germany into the quarterfinals, was in high spirits.
He had just netted his 50th international goal - his second in this tournament - in his 99th appearance and could not hide his satisfaction.
"No, I did not want to show anyone anything. I just wanted to prove it to myself," he said of Germany's first goal, when he sprinted past two England defenders to slot the ball home.
Klose had been sent off in Germany's Group D defeat by Serbia and had to sit out their narrow 1-0 win over Ghana that sent them through the group stage. The debate over whether he was too old had again kicked off back home.
"I was just happy that the team won against Ghana and I could play against England," he said.
The Poland-born striker is now level with Pele on the all-time World Cup scorers' list, just three behind top scorer Ronaldo on 15.
"Back when I was a kid it was a dream to have such a record, of scoring at every second Germany game I play." - Reuters